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20120928
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. it depends on the freedom of citizens to speak their minds and assemble without fear. and on the rule of law and due process that guarantees the rights of all people. in other words, a true democracy, real freedom is hard work. those in power have to resist the temptation to crack down on dissidents. in hard economic times, countries must be tempted -- may be tempted to rally the people around perceived enemies at home and abroad, rather than focusing on the pain-staking work of reform. moreover, there will always be those who reject human progress. dictators to cling to power. corrupt interests that depend on the status quo. and extremists who fanned the flames of hate and division. from northern ireland to south asia. from africa to the americas. from the balkans to the pacific rim, we have witnessed the convulsions that can accompany transitions to a new political order. at the time, the conflicts arise along the fault lines of race or tribe and often they arise from the difficulties of reconciling tradition and faith with the diversity and independence of the modern world. in every count
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